The impact of gender, language and writing style on perceptions of participants in online political discussion forums
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The aim of this research was to study the differences between male and female use of language in an online discussion forum. A discussion forum on the topic of politics was created and participants invited to use it over a period of two months. Quotes from the discussion were then used in a questionnaire to determine the participant's ability to identify gender from reading the text only. An equal number of male and females took part and a chi squared test found no significant difference between them in their ability to answer correctly. The results found that males and females do use language differently and that these differences are sufficiently obvious in most cases to accurately determine gender, based only on the type of language displayed in their postings.
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